A RYEDALE stable worker is set to run the 2019 London Marathon on behalf of Racing Welfare - having applied but failed to get a place eight times before.

Nigel Kitching, 66, who works at Oaks Farm stables in West Knapton, chose the charity because, working at a stables with trainer Mark Dwyer, he sees the good work it does.

“I’ve worked at Oaks Farm stables for a while and I’ve seen the injuries that jockeys and stable staff get,” he said.

Getting a place in the London Marathon has been a drawn out process - he has applied eight times in the past and missed out, and he had almost given up hope.

“In January this year I applied for the last time,” he said. “I’m really pleased about it - it’s a good cause to run for.”

Nigel, who lives in Kilham, near Driffield, has been running for about 20 years and in that time has completed 10 ultra-marathons, between 10 and 15 marathons, and a series of half marathon and 10k events - but this will be his first time at the London Marathon, and it is being held the day before his birthday.

“It was on my bucket list, the London Marathon,” he said. “I’m just going to enjoy it. I’m looking forward to it.”

He added that training will involve considerable distances, including two half marathons while he is in South Africa in December and about 30km per week “to keep in the running mood”.

Nigel has to raise a minimum of £1,750.

Racing Welfare’s mission is to enhance the wellbeing of people from the horseracing and thoroughbred breeding community, by providing enabling and proactive support throughout and after their working lives.

To support Racing Welfare, go to uk.virginmoneygiving.com/giving/ and search Nigel Kitching.